Hamilton quickest but Mercedes are wary of Williams

2014 Italian Grand Prix Friday practice analysis

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A recurring electronic problem kept Lewis Hamilton from running for an hour during the second practice session, but seems not to have put him off his stride.

At the close of practice on Friday he still had the fastest time of the day, set during the first session. And most significantly the fault did not occur on his race engine.

However team mate Nico Rosberg was left to do the bulk of Mercedes’ race simulation work and he had some concerns after the chequered flag came down on Friday afternoon.

“It seems that we are quick on one lap but on the long run the others were very fast,” he said. “I didn’t feel 100 per cent confident in the car, so I can’t be happy with today and I have a lot of work to do tonight with the boys.”

From the long run pace (see chart below) it appears Williams are likely to be their strongest challengers, as they were widely tipped to be before the weekend began. The team usually keep a lid on their pace on Fridays, but the long run by Valtteri Bottas has clearly given Rosberg something to think about.

Bottas said his team’s low downforce aerodynamic package was working well: “With the low downforce the car does slide a bit more, but it’s manageable,” he said. “I am really pleased with the long run pace, but think there is a little more to get from it.”

While Williams’ race pace looked good, Ferrari showed strong performance over a single lap at their home race. Kimi Raikkonen, who enjoyed a trouble-free Friday for once this year, lost less than a tenth of a second to Rosberg over their best sector times.

Monza’s high speeds require tough tyres so Pirelli have brought their hardest rubber. However the combination of a fairly short race duration and a high penalty for making a pit stop generally pushes teams towards making a single pit stop, as is likely to be the case on Sunday.

“Both compounds look to be very durable, with degradation also very low,” said Pirelli’s motorsport diretor Paul Hembery. “We would expect to see one stop for most drivers on Sunday, as was the case last year. The drivers could qualify on the medium or the hard tyre, but we should see the medium compound used for the majority of the race.”

Longest stint comparison – second practice

This chart shows all the drivers’ lap times (in seconds) during their longest unbroken stint:


Sebastian Vettel90.23689.6189.97689.78390.05189.95390.60989.53289.74889.52789.86198.53789.634
Daniel Ricciardo93.41790.01590.20994.53189.83789.7189.82989.68390.04389.6889.71689.60889.60689.892
Lewis Hamilton89.3589.48689.30991.161
Nico Rosberg91.54589.72289.52390.36689.44889.54791.41689.72289.35695.61790.11789.8589.97390.38990.10991.56293.764
Fernando Alonso86.565126.31692.786105.9986.566
Kimi Raikkonen90.19189.82389.99690.13589.61589.90790.41689.77189.63589.51389.67589.33789.87589.772
Romain Grosjean92.63291.84395.29991.57592.091
Pastor Maldonado91.99491.41591.3291.30891.12193.98190.77791.49691.0491.09391.54292.30791.2291.30891.07491.18891.01790.96390.99391.87291.40491.427
Jenson Button90.36890.99390.88790.65890.59790.30290.48190.44290.168
Kevin Magnussen90.86490.25990.20990.18890.48590.23790.41390.21290.23890.21890.38890.87
Nico Hulkenberg91.19590.62590.47390.37290.51290.58690.50190.53390.47690.545
Sergio Perez9089.63589.80589.71190.46889.89390.12990.69591.05890.14389.58689.561
Adrian Sutil91.81191.43891.12591.19191.52491.79390.93190.93191.51391.9491.07291.9890.96
Esteban Gutierrez91.11291.14891.01690.90690.87490.86691.08291.03991.12391.03891.185
Jean-Eric Vergne91.42291.79491.0691.06791.43391.18791.12691.008
Daniil Kvyat90.54390.15690.62890.24390.40190.2490.18790.81790.45990.4290.54690.54490.73492.38890.92590.61490.8797.45691.735
Felipe Massa89.77889.76589.93589.72889.36589.64690.78990.71489.73189.65189.96190.15690.09190.06790.32290.14490.13390.753
Valtteri Bottas90.27389.68989.3689.20789.11388.93889.3989.36789.25189.32990.31289.32989.24989.2789.21589.51389.45590.01190.87389.762
Jules Bianchi93.39692.79393.11293.38793.29194.1893.085
Max Chilton93.47692.45792.57492.42392.29492.211
Marcus Ericsson93.68894.54792.59294.10392.68992.0492.34892.63393.14192.50892.79692.79692.415
Kamui Kobayashi94.13694.00793.09694.90593.42193.27792.02599.419

Sector times and ultimate lap times – second practice

PosNo.DriverCarS1S2S3UltimateGapDeficit to best
16Nico RosbergMercedes27.776 (4)29.512 (6)28.926 (1)1’26.2140.011
244Lewis HamiltonMercedes27.696 (2)29.356 (1)29.166 (5)1’26.2180.0040.068
37Kimi RaikkonenFerrari27.681 (1)29.510 (4)29.061 (2)1’26.2520.0380.079
414Fernando AlonsoFerrari27.728 (3)29.506 (3)29.152 (4)1’26.3860.1720.179
577Valtteri BottasWilliams-Mercedes27.808 (6)29.489 (2)29.328 (9)1’26.6250.4110.133
622Jenson ButtonMcLaren-Mercedes27.867 (8)29.511 (5)29.317 (8)1’26.6950.4810.067
71Sebastian VettelRed Bull-Renault27.946 (10)29.679 (8)29.075 (3)1’26.7000.4860.062
820Kevin MagnussenMcLaren-Mercedes27.849 (7)29.531 (7)29.390 (10)1’26.7700.5560.111
93Daniel RicciardoRed Bull-Renault28.013 (12)29.721 (11)29.169 (6)1’26.9030.6890.089
1019Felipe MassaWilliams-Mercedes28.019 (13)29.682 (9)29.228 (7)1’26.9290.7150.006
1111Sergio PerezForce India-Mercedes27.796 (5)29.703 (10)29.501 (13)1’27.0000.7860.079
1227Nico HulkenbergForce India-Mercedes27.922 (9)29.910 (13)29.395 (11)1’27.2271.0130.000
1326Daniil KvyatToro Rosso-Renault27.966 (11)29.941 (14)29.431 (12)1’27.3381.1240.138
1421Esteban GutierrezSauber-Ferrari28.150 (16)29.753 (12)29.806 (16)1’27.7091.4950.131
1599Adrian SutilSauber-Ferrari28.116 (14)30.031 (16)29.699 (14)1’27.8461.6320.183
1625Jean-Eric VergneToro Rosso-Renault28.134 (15)30.018 (15)29.721 (15)1’27.8731.6590.056
1713Pastor MaldonadoLotus-Renault28.272 (17)30.344 (18)29.906 (18)1’28.5222.3080.178
1817Jules BianchiMarussia-Ferrari28.375 (19)30.299 (17)29.915 (19)1’28.5892.3750.070
194Max ChiltonMarussia-Ferrari28.296 (18)30.367 (19)30.055 (20)1’28.7182.5040.068
208Romain GrosjeanLotus-Renault28.633 (21)30.384 (20)29.869 (17)1’28.8862.6720.199
2110Kamui KobayashiCaterham-Renault28.468 (20)30.518 (22)30.187 (22)1’29.1732.9590.005
229Marcus EricssonCaterham-Renault28.674 (22)30.486 (21)30.080 (21)1’29.2403.0260.035

Speed trap – second practice

#DriverCarEngineMax speed (kph)Gap
127Nico HulkenbergForce IndiaMercedes348.8
222Jenson ButtonMcLarenMercedes348.60.2
36Nico RosbergMercedesMercedes346.91.9
477Valtteri BottasWilliamsMercedes346.72.1
511Sergio PerezForce IndiaMercedes346.52.3
620Kevin MagnussenMcLarenMercedes346.22.6
744Lewis HamiltonMercedesMercedes3462.8
814Fernando AlonsoFerrariFerrari345.92.9
919Felipe MassaWilliamsMercedes3453.8
107Kimi RaikkonenFerrariFerrari3444.8
1125Jean-Eric VergneToro RossoRenault342.95.9
1226Daniil KvyatToro RossoRenault341.17.7
134Max ChiltonMarussiaFerrari339.98.9
143Daniel RicciardoRed BullRenault339.89
1599Adrian SutilSauberFerrari339.69.2
161Sebastian VettelRed BullRenault339.49.4
1721Esteban GutierrezSauberFerrari339.39.5
1813Pastor MaldonadoLotusRenault337.511.3
1910Kamui KobayashiCaterhamRenault335.113.7
209Marcus EricssonCaterhamRenault33315.8
2117Jules BianchiMarussiaFerrari331.817
228Romain GrosjeanLotusRenault330.418.4

Complete practice times

PosDriverCarFP1FP2Total laps
1Lewis HamiltonMercedes1’26.1871’26.28641
2Nico RosbergMercedes1’26.9951’26.22567
3Kimi RaikkonenFerrari1’27.4931’26.33158
4Fernando AlonsoFerrari1’27.1691’26.56549
5Valtteri BottasWilliams-Mercedes1’28.1481’26.75855
6Jenson ButtonMcLaren-Mercedes1’26.8101’26.76261
7Sebastian VettelRed Bull-Renault1’27.2711’26.76254
8Kevin MagnussenMcLaren-Mercedes1’27.2281’26.88174
9Felipe MassaWilliams-Mercedes1’28.1501’26.93553
10Daniel RicciardoRed Bull-Renault1’28.4871’26.99249
11Sergio PerezForce India-Mercedes1’27.6871’27.07955
12Nico HulkenbergForce India-Mercedes1’28.1121’27.22762
13Daniil KvyatToro Rosso-Renault1’27.7411’27.47658
14Esteban GutierrezSauber-Ferrari1’28.1141’27.84054
15Jean-Eric VergneToro Rosso-Renault1’28.3001’27.92963
16Adrian SutilSauber-Ferrari1’28.02935
17Giedo van der GardeSauber-Ferrari1’28.42919
18Jules BianchiMarussia-Ferrari1’30.0811’28.65961
19Pastor MaldonadoLotus-Renault1’29.5121’28.70066
20Max ChiltonMarussia-Ferrari1’30.0171’28.78654
21Romain GrosjeanLotus-Renault1’29.08529
22Kamui KobayashiCaterham-Renault1’29.17832
23Daniel JuncadellaForce India-Mercedes1’29.19210
24Marcus EricssonCaterham-Renault1’30.9481’29.27553
25Charles PicLotus-Renault1’30.12523
26Roberto MerhiCaterham-Renault1’30.70429

2014 Italian Grand Prix

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Image © Williams/LAT

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Keith Collantine
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16 comments on “Hamilton quickest but Mercedes are wary of Williams”

  1. that’s some serious race pace from Bottas. i think that those that said Williams could challenge for the win this weekend are right. wouldn’t that be fantastic!!!

    1. Yes, everything equal on Sunday and they can annoy Mercedes. Even if they fail to get the pole, if they manage second grid and outlast Mercedes in tyre wear they can win it. But I think Mercedes will do better than that and personally I want Lewis to win this race.

  2. The speedtrap figures show once more how dominant the Mercedes powertrain is. Also Williams seem strong, although im wondering if Bottas was running light on fuel or if Massa had a problem. Also going by the results of Raikkonen, Vettel and Ricciardo, we could be in for a massive battle come race day!

    1. Bottas was running the softer tyre, I don’t know about Massa, but if he had the harder one that would explain some of the difference. Still great pace from Bottas though.

    2. Bottas did a long run on mediums; Massa was on the hards.

    3. There is only 2.9kph to the first non-Mercedes PU car, Alonso’s. I don’t think this necessarily says more about the engines than the cars they are in. Also, Alonso is quicker in S2 than the fastest cars, suggesting that the Ferrari is running more downforce than some Mercedes cars.

      1. I don’t think that Ferrari were running with more downforce, their car just generates more downforce than i.e. McLaren or Force India. Also I think that Alonso’s fastest S2-time was down to a lighter fuel load.

    4. Formula Indonesia (@)
      6th September 2014, 0:59

      Dont forget JB

  3. Considering their advantage of raw pace, MB may consider a two-stop race. It certainly looks like they need some answer to Williams, strategically. If they can gap Williams by .5s per lap they can cover the extra pit delta over 53 laps and then some. Williams won’t be able to profitably cover this strategy as they lack the raw pace to go toe to toe in a triple-sprint. From Williams’ view, their great race pace may not redound if they can’t get on the first two rows. They may be stuck behind a couple Ferraris and a McLaren while Mercedes runs away in the first stint.

    1. The problem would be a 2 stop would require them to overtake the Williams on track, Unless they were closer to 1 sec per lap quicker. We’ve seen how difficult a Williams is to pass already this season

    2. We’ve seen Williams’ one lap pace not demonstrated until free practice 3 on numerous occasions this season, so I would not be surprised to see Williams close the gap to Mercedes in FP3 and qualifying (I don’t think overhauling them is out of the question either).

  4. Ferrari don’t look bad, their sector times look competitive, as does their long run pace, and they are also quite quick in the speed traps!

    With that being said, it’s Friday, so it’ll probably go all downhill from here.

    1. Yeah, its friday and Ferrari have seemed closer than they really are most fridays this year, so not expecting too much. I think Kimi’s assessment of their pace (it xxxxs) is likely to be proven correct

  5. Quite unusual that everyone bar Hülkenberg did his fastest lap without nailing all 3 sectors together.

  6. I want some retribution for Hamilton this weekend. I want to see him absolutely smash Rosberg like in Malaysia, with Rosberg at least being pressured by others if not beaten to 2nd. Ideally I want the championship to close up a reasonable amount, so Rosberg lower than 2nd hopefully. Most of all I want to see a trouble-free quali for Hamilton.

  7. How is force indias race pace??

Comments are closed.